Anadarko takes New Zealand Pegasus basin blocks

New Zealand Petroleum & Minerals has awarded 10 petroleum exploration permits in the 2012 block offer.

The work associated with the 10 permits represents $82 million in committed exploration spending and as much as $776 million should the permits all reach the full 5-year term, the agency said.

Five of the blocks are on land and five are offshore, including two in the frontier Pegasus basin south and southeast of Wellington.

Anadarko New Zealand Co., an affiliate of Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Houston, was awarded PEP 54858 and 54861, covering 4,273 sq km and 2,812 sq km, respectively, in the Pegasus basin.

New Zealand Petroleum & Minerals described the Pegasus basin as being undrilled and lying in as much as 3,000 m of water or more. It is thought prospective for gas, oil, and gas hydrates.

Source rocks include early Cretaceous marine shales, the late Cretaceous and Paleocene Whangai formation marine mudstone, and late Paleocene Waipawa formation marine black shale. Reservoir rocks include Cretaceous, Paleogene, and Neogene transgressive and turbidite sandstones and fractured Late Cretaceous to Paleocene shales.

Anadarko, which first worked in New Zealand in 2010, also has interests in the offshore deepwater Taranaki basin and offshore Canterbury basin and plans to drill its first wells on those permits in 2013 and 2014.

Shell GSB Ltd., OMV New Zealand Ltd., and Mitsui E&P Australia Pty. Ltd. took PEP 54863 in the Great South basin, and in the deepwater Taranaki basin Todd Exploration Ltd. and Cue Taranaki Pty. Ltd. won PEP 54865 and NZOG Canterbury Ltd. took PEP 54857.

Onshore in the Taranaki basin, NZEC Manaia Ltd. and NZOG 38259 Ltd. won PEP 54867, TAG Oil (NZ) Ltd. won PEP 54873, and a combine of TAG Oil Ltd.’s Cheal Petroleum Ltd. and East West Petroleum (NZ) Ltd. was awarded PEP 54879, 54877, and 54876 (OGJ Online, Dec. 11, 2012).

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